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The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

David Levinthal: Photographs 1972–2016

Saturday, Oct. 14, 2017 – Monday, Feb. 19, 2018

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New York–based photographer David Levinthal uses staged photographs of toys and other everyday objects to bring viewers face-to-face with themes central to American history, identity, and consciousness. David Levinthal: Photographs 1972–2016 provides a rich overview of the artist’s work.

Through the iconography of mass-produced toys, dolls, and figurines, Levinthal’s photographs have probed the myth of the American West; World War II and the Holocaust; romantic and sexual desire; racial stereotyping; the heroism of sport; and the futuristic fantasy of space exploration. The images range from intimately scaled prints, to large 20-by-24-inch Polaroids, to monumental inkjet prints.

Evoking the visual language of photojournalism, pornography, television, film, and religious art, the photographs elicit a response not to the actual moment or event or object, but to the place it holds in a collective American consciousness. For example, Levinthal (born 1949) said that in his “Wild West” series, images depict “the West that never was but will always be.”

David Levinthal: Photographs 1972–2016 celebrates a gift to the MFAH of 44 Levinthal works. Given by Donald Rosenfeld, John A. MacMahon, and an anonymous donor, the photographs are presented alongside a selection of Levinthal images already held by the Museum. In addition to “Wild West,” the exhibition highlights series including “Bad Barbie,” “Baseball,” “Blackface,” “Hitler Moves East,” “Mein Kampf,” “Modern Romance,” “Netsuke,” and “Space.”

 

HOURS & ADMISSION

  • Tuesday - Wednesday, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
    Thursday, 10:00 am - 9:00 pm
    Friday - Saturday, 10:00 am - 7:00 pm
    Sunday, 12:15 pm - 7:00 pm
    Monday: Closed (Except Monday Holidays). Closed Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.
  • General Admission

    • MFAH Members FREE
    • Adults $15
    • Seniors (65+ with ID) $10
    • Military (with ID) $10
    • College Students (19+ with ID) $7.50
    • Youth (13–18) $7.50
    • Children (12 & younger) FREE
    • Certain special exhibitions are ticketed, with an additional charge.
    On Thursday, general admission is free for everyone.

Directions & Parking

  • Free Parking
  • Paid Parking
  • Street Parking
  • Make visiting a snap! Visit mfah.org/parking for complete parking info, including a map you can download.

    Two Parking Garages        

    Parking Garage Hours

    Open daily from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.

    Parking Garage Fees

    • Parking payments may be made only with major credit cards, or with MasterCard and Visa debit cards.
    • The first 30 minutes are always free. On Thursday, parking is free for visitors who enter the Museum between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m.
    • For hourly rates, go to mfah.org/parking
    Recommendation for guests with limited mobility: Use the covered drop-off lane at the Main Street entrance to the Beck Building, or use wheelchair-accessible parking in the garage at 1144 Binz Street.

Special Offers / Dining

Paolo Fronza, from Fellini Caffè, runs this sophisticated dining operation. Enjoy an array of Italian-inspired fare with a Texas flair, a European-style coffee bar, a kids menu, and much more at the MFA Café, located on the lower level of the Beck Building.

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